Book Review,  Reviews

Captive – AJ Grainger

“My little sister, Addy, is playing with her Baby Betty doll on the stairs of Number 10. Her collection of dolls is pushed up against the wooden panelling on the fourteenth step, the one that thats the stairs around the first bend. She shouldn’t be here. She should be up in our flat, getting ready to leave.”

Robyn, her mother and her baby sister are on the way to spend time with her grandparents. Leaving her father behind to run the country Robyn is worried, and rightly so. Her father, the Prime Minister, was shot just three months ago and things have been tense at Downing Street ever since. Robyn’s fears for her father are unfounded though, when it is her who is taken hostage, that is held captive and who her father needs to bargain for. She is trapped in a web of corruption and she is unsure what to think, all she knows is that there is something odd going on with her father and that she is stuck with a strange, melancholy boy, guarding her.


An interesting read Captive delivered just what I expected from a YA crime/mystery. It was fast paced, involved a romantic element that was none too shabby and had just enough blood to make me squirm but not throw up!

The situation that Robyn is put into because of her father is a pretty crazy one. There are terrorists after her father and at the start of the book she sees things very much in black and white. They are the baddies whilst she and her father are the good guys. Once captivated Robyn starts to understand that the world isn’t always like that and there are confusions along the way. I hated that the terrorist leader ‘Feather’ treated her the way she did and thought that it was ridiculous to blame her for being a typical 16 year old girl. The events of the book really open Robyn’s eyes and I thought that it showed brilliantly what a major event can do to a girl like her. I particularly loved the relationship between Robyn and her little sister Addy and just how much she was willing to do to protect her, that was amazing.

The story was great and it really captivated me. It brought to mind some thoughts about the actions of those involved that I’ve never really thought about before. I am one of these people who likes to complain about the politicians we have in place at the moment (though unlike some I do my bit by voting in elections rather than just sitting complaining!) but this book reminded me that they are human too. I hate the idea of the ‘celebrity’ so all the stuff with the paparazzi infuriated me and that made me like Robyn more than I probably would have done if she were in any other book!

There were things that I wasn’t sure about with Captive which is why it was rated 3.5 on Goodreads. I thought that the love interests were a little quick to rush into things that there was only minor development there. I think my problem with that was a little to do with the idea of Stockholm syndrome and thats how it came across a little bit, which was a little disappointing. Other than that the book was a little too quick and I would have liked more to find out about who Robyn was before the kidnapping.

I did enjoy Captive a lot and I would recommend it. Its a brilliant piece for the authors debut and I think that AJ Grainger will definitely go far in her career as a writer. I really hope she does anyway because there aren’t a great deal of authors out there at the minute producing crime/mystery books that really make you think like Captive does and there needs to be more!

Capitve will be published by Simon and Schuster on January 29th. My copy was sent from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. 
To buy the book or for more info please visit:
Amazon | Hive | Goodreads | Author Website

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